The PW100’s remarkable 30-year journey has been made possible by the airframe OEMs and airlines that seized upon the opportunities created by the engine. In doing so, they gave birth to the modern regional airline business that exists around the globe today. In this post, we speak with Robert J. Deluce, President and CEO of Porter Airlines. Porter Airlines, launched in 2006, now provides service to 20 locations in Eastern Canada and the United States. Porter exclusively flies Bombardier Q400 aircraft, which are powered by PW150A engines, the latest in the PW100 family of engines. The PW150 is considered the most advanced turboprop engine currently in service.
PW100 ENGINE ALLOWS PORTER AIRLINES TO COMPETE WITH REGIONAL JETS
(Biographical Note: Robert J. Deluce founded Porter Airlines with the objective of adding competition to Canada’s scheduled air-service landscape by providing additional choice for travellers. He is one of Canada’s most knowledgeable and respected airline owners and operators. He brings to the business a history of successfully owning, financing, restructuring, operating and managing a number of airlines in Canada.)
How would you describe the PW150?
Robert Deluce (RD): “The PW150 is a marvellous piece of technology that has helped redefine regional flying; it takes us anywhere that Porter wants to go.”
P&WC: What doors has the PW150 opened for Porter?
RD: “Porter could not have started its operation without the Q400 and the PW150 engine. The combination of the engine and the aircraft allowed Porter to operate from Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport in a way that no other aircraft could. The PW150’s additional power and speed allow Porter to compete more effectively with regional jets. The engine has also helped us change people’s perception of turboprops, and that has been a very positive thing.”
P&WC: How does the PW150 fit with your company’s brand and values?
RD: “Porter was founded with speed, convenience and service in mind, and the PW150 allows us to deliver on all of that.”
P&WC: What sets the PW150 apart from its competitors?
RD: “It’s a combination of the speed, power, lighter weight and operating economics that really allows the PW150 to stand out.”
P&WC: How do you think the PW150 will be viewed 30 years from now?
RD: “Thirty years from now, the PW150 will be referred to as a real game changer that allowed turboprops to come into the 21st century.”
P&WC: What’s your perspective on the long-term relationship between Porter and P&WC?
RD: “Porter operates aircraft that are very much a made-in-Canada success. When you consider the fact that the aircraft itself is manufactured in Toronto and the PW150 engine is provided by a Canadian manufacturer, it does give us a certain amount of pride.”
Editor’s note: Porter Airlines was chosen as North America’s Best Regional Airline in the 2014 Skytrax World Airline Awards. In October 2013, Porter was named the best small airline in the world by Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers Choice Awards. It also ranked third overall among airlines in all categories.